Always Be Creating Part 2: Time by Samwise Didier

Art Director, creator, illustrator, and now solo artist of his newest work The Last Winter, Sam Didier shares his thoughts about inspiration and creativity. Didier has worked on projects such as, World of Warcraft, Heroes of The Storm, and books like Grimbeard: Tales of the Last Dwarf, and now The Last Winter. With such a successful, and long career, Didier has mastered the art of creative flow. So, turn off the television, put away your phone, and listen up, because this award-winning, popular artist is spilling his ‘secret.’

I hear this question daily, by artists and non-artists alike, “How do you find time to create?” This inevitably spirals into the excuse that they’re so busy with X, Y, and Z, or that they just crash at home and have no time to create.

When I hear this, I usually lob out a question to them like, “Did you see the Game of Thrones finale?” Then they start yammering about how they had a GoT themed party where everyone cosplayed different characters from the series, watched a few previous episodes and then check this out, THEY EVEN MADE FOOD AND DRINKS FROM THE SERIES TO EAT FOR DINNER! Afterwards, they had a Q&A about why this dude said that, and so on. When they finally catch their breath I say, “That’s great, do you put that much creative effort into you own art? Or into your own creations?” After a long pause, the response is always the same: a guilty laugh combined with a drawn-out, “UHHHHHHHH, no.”

(Artwork From The Last Winter)

Don’t get me wrong, Game of Thrones is great, hanging with friends is great, cooking and cosplay and eating and drinking are all great, but that time, energy, and creative mindshare also needs to be directed into one’s own creations.

Now, I know this special event-type-thing doesn’t happen every day, so I’ll stop being a party pooper and give our friend here a pass. It really isn’t about these big things that kill the bulk of our creative time. Anyone can plan around a big event that will take a good-sized chomp out of your time. Those are easy to detect but isn’t it funny how you never really notice that you got bit by a dozen mosquitoes until ya start scratching at them? Things like cell phones, games, movies, social media, texting, tweeting, retweeting, are basically digital mosquitoes and time killers. Sure, they are fun, but damn, do they take a bite out of our time. Before you know it, you have spent hours, hell, maybe even DAYS of good ol’ creation time, scratching away at those digital skeeter bites.

(Artwork From The Last Winter)

        How can one focus if they are constantly distracted?

        How can one create if they are constantly consuming?

        How can one build their own worlds if they are constantly living in others?

Time to stop scratching and start biting back!

        Put down the remote, and pick up your sketchpad!

        Stop texting, and start writing!

        Put down the controller and start playing in the worlds you create!

There is always time to create, and to further prove my point, stop reading this blog post and go do something creative.

ABC – Always Be Creating.

Samwise Didier